VIC launches $7M Recycling Innovation Centre

A new innovation centre is bringing together businesses, industry groups, research institutions and not-for-profit organisations to create solutions to reduce waste, increase recycling and reuse, and generate new revenue for Victorian businesses.

According to Energy, Environment and Climate Change Minister Lily D’Ambrosio, the $7 million Circular Economy Business Innovation Centre will spark innovation and help businesses make sustainable changes to reduce waste.

“This will gather some of the best minds and research about recycling innovation, so that Victorian businesses can get the most out of their materials,” she said.

Building of Sustainability Victoria’s Love Food Hate Waste program, the first focus area of the centre will be reducing food and organic waste, which currently costs the Victorian economy over $6 billion each year.

The centre will conduct research and offer expert advice and resources through a virtual hub, facilitate collaboration and events and offer grants and support for businesses.

“The centre will work with a variety of businesses – from farms and cafes to factories and appliance shops – to streamline the way they operate, reduce waste and improve efficiency,” D’Ambrosio said.

To mark the launch of the centre, the Victorian Government has opened the first round of the $10 million Recycling Victoria Business Support Fund.

“The fund will help businesses, industry groups and not-for-profit organisations to improve resource efficiency, reduce waste to landfill, increase recycling and reduce their operating costs,” D’Ambrosio said.

Grants of up to $200,000 are available through the fund’s Identification stream, which is open for individual applicants or collaborative partnerships to investigate how to adapt and apply circular economy business opportunities and approaches.

Additionally, grants of up to $1,000,000 are available through the fund’s Implementation stream, which is open to applicants looking to implement solutions across multiple businesses.

The first round of the $3 million Recycling Victoria Innovation Fund is also open. Broken up into two streams, Food Innovation and Collaborative Innovation, the fund is aligned with the principals of designing out waste and maintaining product and material value over a longer period of time.

“This funding will support partnerships between businesses, industry groups, research institutions, community groups and charities to identify, develop and scale-up more environmentally sustainable opportunities and business models,” D’Ambrosio said.

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